The Women’s Opportunity in the 1950s

The essay in question dwells upon the roles played by women in the United States in the 1950s with the focus on their business opportunities. One of the features of the 1950s-1960s was the development of family values that established quite strict gender roles. Women were confined to their households with their major goal to raise good Americans.

The focus on creativity and the culture of consumerism became the background for business opportunities for American women. Females could combine their motherhood with business roles as heads of music, dance, and art studios, which complicates the image of an American woman of the 1950s. The author of the article under analysis explores some trends that existed at that period. One of the points made is the business opportunities available to people in the so-called Sunbelt. Southern states were business-driven and could be regarded as the mecca for entrepreneurs during the post-war period.

This business-centered culture even overrode gender-related conventions in some spheres. Another point provided by the author is the role creativity and consumerism played in the empowerment of women. As mentioned above, creativity was fostered in young people as a tool to defeat the Communist model. So, art education was on the rise. A strong economy and the development of the middle class contributed to the popularization of creativity and art. Parents encouraged their children to dance, play music, and be involved in different activities. Females seized the opportunity and became entrepreneurs.

The author of the article under consideration gives a number of examples to show the achievements of females in business. For example, such heads of dance and music studios as Patsy Swayze, Marcella Donovan Perry, and Edith Gutierrez and their input are discussed. It is emphasized that these women (as well as many other American females) managed to balance their family and business life. Art education was an appropriate platform for this as women could care about their children and teach others. I agree with the points made in the article in question.

I believe such factors as strong economy, business-focused South, consumerism, the rise of the middle class, and fostering creativity enabled women to start their own business. Females could perform roles beyond their households as the call for creativity was intrinsic to the American culture of that period. It is necessary to note that the shift of gender roles was not significant as women still operated within the domain of education, which is still a form of childrearing. However, it was an important move towards further empowerment of women.

On balance, it is possible to note that the involvement of American women in the entrepreneurial effort of the 1950s complicates the image of an American female as a housewife and mother. Instead of complete confinement to households, some women were entrepreneurs and ran their own businesses rather successfully. At the same time, it is important to stress that this was only the first step towards the true empowerment. Business ladies operated within the scope of education that was closely linked with the concept of motherhood. Nevertheless, women shoed their capabilities and eagerness to be actively involved in many spheres of life.

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